Most of us do have a life outside of our employment. Sometimes our work gets in the middle of our life events – such as kids ballgames, doctor visits, school plays, graduations, etc. and we have to adjust to participate; however, sometimes, our life events creep into our workplace, as well. Given the current state of our economy, increased home foreclosures, difficult relationships, challenging family members and more, it’s easy to understand how workers have these things on their mind even while at work. Most times, we never know what’s going on in the personal lives of our employees or those around us. We never know when just a simple word of appreciation or encouragement might be the highlight of someone else’s day.
So, here are a few quick tips to implement into your managerial regime while you’re at work…and maybe, just maybe, you will make a huge difference in the life of at least one employee:
- Be Attentive – Watch for signs from your employees that something is going on. Things like tardiness, lack of performance, bad attitudes may be just a symptom of a deeper issue. Also, be certain to really listen to your employees when they come to you. Listening will help you determine in what areas your staff needs encouragement.
- Be Positive – Focus on the positives instead of the negatives. If you always expect the worst, that’s probably what you’re going to get. So, look for ways to highlight the positive aspects of projects, employees, and teams.
- Be Genuine – Don’t give ‘canned’ encouragement to your employees. Saying ‘Way to go!’, ‘Good job!’ or ‘You can do it!’ can come across as a bit insincere and meaningless. Find other ways to encourage your staff by asking follow-up questions like “how were you able to do that? I knew you would.” These types of responses tell the employee that you are really listening and are in-tune with what’s going on with them.
- Be Real – You owe it to your employees to be direct and straight-forward without glossing over reality. Every day can’t be all roses and rainbows and unicorns. Make your employees aware of specific hurdles they may be facing at work, but then give them the tools to overcome those hurdles. Being in the loop of what’s going on within the organization and knowing how it may affect them will give your employees more encouragement than you may realize.
Applying these four simple tips will help you to become a better person, a better manager and a better encourager to those around you. And…just maybe some of that encouragement they receive at the workplace will carry them through those life events when they need just a little nudge to make it to the next day. Have a great day and go mark your spot!! Catch up with me on Twitter too – @craigholloman.